Wizards of the Coast, the publishers of the popular American trading card game Magic: The Gathering will be removing a card from its upcoming Godzilla-inspired set Ikoria: Lair of Behemoths.
The card in question, “Spacegodzilla, Death Corona,” based on the titular character within the Godzilla mythos, will be deleted from the set in order to avoid negative connotations with the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.
The character’s epithet, “Death Corona,” is not a tasteless joke, but a reference to its iconic move, “Corona Beam.” According to ComicBook.com, the new cards were designed months before the international pandemic began, meaning the designers had no way of predicting the twisted meaning their latest creation would assume.
MORE FROM THE WEB
Although Wizards of the Coast is working hard to halt the printing process, it seems likely that the card – which has already gone into print – will appear in the hands of at least some customers.
Fans are already joking that the card – thanks to both its artificial scarcity and its context within the pandemic – will likely become an exceptionally hot collector’s item, too.
@wizards_magic Way to use covid19 to cash in on public sentiment driving up sales! Spacegodzilla, death corona is going to be such a hot item now.
— Shogun Omega (@shogun_omega) April 3, 2020
While the rest of Ikoria: Lair of the Behemoth won’t be officially released until May 15th, the set – minus Spacegodzilla – will be available on the Magic: The Gathering Arena video game starting April 16th.
Of course, Wizards of the Coast and Magic: The Gathering parent company Hasbro aren’t the only businesses suffering from coincidental backlash as a result of the crisis. Another company, the winery Constellation Brands, is also having a tough time of it as one of their largest products, Corona beer, was reported to have lost over $170 million in revenue in February. Ouch.